Steelers Digest is reporting that the Steelers have signed Trai Essex today and have released lineman Nevin McCaskill to make room on the 90 man roster. Essex was the opening day right guard last year for the Steelers, but ended up losing the job after he returned from an early season ankle injury.
Following the 2010 season he was an unrestricted free agent and did not appear to receive any interest from any other teams since the lockout ended. Essex did play guard and tackle for the Steelers over the course of the 2010 season and he will likely serve as a swing man once again should he make the 53 man roster. The signing of Essex also might signal the Steelers unhappiness with second-year lineman Chris Scott who has been unimpressive in his first two preseason games. Scott was drafted in the fifth-round of the 2010 draft, but was sidelined most of his rookie year with a foot injury.
Essex was originally drafted by the Steelers in the third round of the 2005 NFL Draft and started 25 games during his six years with the team. The Essex deal is reportedly for one-year.